Well, THAT year didn't last long, did it? I mean it was the regulation size and all, but it didn't exactly pull up a chair, kick off the shoes and chat awhile over a cup of coffee and jam toast now, did it?.
Instead, it seemed to always want to be somewhere
other than where it was, and be making enough racket getting there for six
years. If you happened to be nearby when it passed through, you could end
up with jam on the carpet and coffee in your lap, wondering why the government
doesn't do something about it.
So far, Michelle is following in the footsteps of her older siblings. Literally. Put her down in one spot, leave the room for five minutes and she will be half way down the hall when you come back. Yoko claims she's rolling. I think she's standing up, running across the room, and quickly laying down again, hoping to fool everyone into thinking that she's only rolling. That's why she's always grinning. I'm sure she's just waiting for us to be gone from the room long enough that she can make it out the door and down to the playground where all the other kids hang out and have fun.
She certainly seems to thrive on companionship.
And the noisier the companions, the happier she is. If Calvin and Brian
are away, she easily gets bored and fussy. But let C &B go into their
and she'll bust out in a big grin, arms windmilling in all directions, fascinated
by the whirr and blur of her big brothers' play.
Michelle's favorite foods? Everything in all the
major food groups (she hasn't rejected anything yet) but she especially
likes cheese, mikan (mandarin oranges), rice, apples, pasta,
donuts, and her first love, cappuccino. That is, the coffee-flavored milk
foam from daddy's cup.
But the biggest surprise of the year occurred when Grandma Kariya came up for a visit and she and Brian chatted away the night in Japanese! Yoko and I sat there with our jaws on the carpet listening to them in utter disbelief. Brian had never used Japanese in our presence before, but obviously was listening to everything being said around him. Interestingly, He and Calvin still talk to each other in English.
At the end of the year, Brian finally caught a
cold worthy of the name and was down and out for a few days. Earlier in
the year, he was sick with the flu along with Calvin and Steve, throwing
up, crying and feeling quite miserable -- for exactly 3 hours! After which
he was hopping (literally!) around the room at top B speed with that goofy
B grin plastered on his face. C & S remained flat on their backs for
a week. BT lives!
Both Calvin and Brian take swimming lessons twice a week and love every minute in the water. Calvin is the original web-footed water boy, but Brian has always looked upon bodies of water larger than a cupful as objects that are usually accompanied by soap and, therefore, something to avoid at all cost. A week into the lessons, however, the tears turned to grins, and now his swimming teacher more than earns her paycheck trying to get him out of the pool at the end of the hour. The duck in him finally quacked.
Yoko had a tough time at the beginning of the year, fighting both morning sickness and a terrible drug addiction. Luckily, the morning sickness lasted only a short while, but the drug addiction was a daily horror until the morning after Michelle was born, when Yoko was allowed for the first time in 9 months to have a cup of non-decaf coffee. If Starbucks was a religion, Yoko would be the Pope. (Steve gave up beer for the duration, but refused to give up his espresso roast, and it was a constant battle to keep Yoko -- and Michelle -- away from Steve's cup.)
Yoko took a short maternity leave from P&G
to have Michelle. Michelle was born at our house, delivered by the same
midwife who delivered Brian. It was a quick and easy birth, but one that
often seemed like a three-stooges comedy sketch. Get Yoko to tell you sometime
the story of the Hagen Daaz ice cream, or the one about the midwife and
the camera angles. But first, give Steve time to pack a bag and flee the
He also spent considerable time ferrying kids between day care, Peter Pan play school, swimming classes, and various parks, and filling in the odd moments picking up toys and clothes -- the same ones, over and over again. A full-time job? HA! He has one, thank you. Three, in fact.
Have a Happy Year of the Ox!